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January 5, 2011

Google Bookmarks Import Without Using Google Toolbar

I really don't understand why Google didn't add a feature that lets you upload a bookmarks file exported by your browser to Google Bookmarks. Google still recommends to install Google Toolbar in Internet Explorer or Firefox to upload bookmarks, but this shouldn't be necessary. That's like installing Picasa to upload your photos to Picasa Web Albums.

Fortunately, Mihai Parparita built a tool for exporting your Delicious bookmarks to Google Bookmarks and it can be used to upload any bookmarks file to Google Bookmarks. Here's how to do that:

1. Go to and sign in. If you haven't used Delicious before, you'll sign in using a Yahoo account. If you've previously bookmarked web pages using Delicious, it's probably a good idea to create a new account.

2. Unlike Google Bookmarks, Delicious has a bookmark importing feature. Upload the HTML file exported by your browser and wait until all your bookmarks are imported.

3. Use Delicious to Google Bookmarks to import your bookmarks to Google Bookmarks. You'll end up with two new labels added by the importing/exporting tools: imported and delicious-export.

The nice thing about Mihai Parparita's tool is that it's open source and it can be modified to import HTML bookmarks file.


  1. But why do we need two sets of bookmarks? Every browser on the market has bookmarking functionality, although some tries to appear more original and call them Favorites.
    So, wouldn't it be great to converge to sets of bookmarks into one?
    There are several advanced features Google Bookmarks already implemented (not in a best-UI way, perhaps), but browsers' bookmarks have not.
    Google Bookmarks support labels. Labels are synonymous to tags or categories. They allow to assign multiple characteristics to each node and to search/filter by a characteristic. Firefox actually started to implement similar in-browser functionality called tags. It’s here, but it's not a convenient thing to use. Neither Chrome nor IE support it.
    Google is in a unique position: it owns both Google Bookmarks technology and Chrome browser. Nothing should stop it from displaying that converged bookmark system in a Chrome menu – replacing current Chrome bookmarks. This way individual user's bookmarks still could be synchronized with bookmarks in Firefox or any other browser. This other browser wouldn’t know these are Google bookmarks and would perhaps support only part of functionality.

  2. @Vladimir:

    That's a separate issue. Let's say you use Firefox and you want to import your existing bookmarks to Google. To bookmark other sites, you could use the Google Bookmarks bookmarklet.

  3. Too bad the notes/descriptions aren't imported as well :( Do you think this is a Google Bookmarks importing limitation, or could the tool be improved to support that?

    Also, the original date the bookmarks were saved isn't imported either. With these two issues addressed, Google Bookmarks would be in an excellent position to serve as a lifeboat for delicious users.

  4. Thanks for the tip, Alex! I thought about switching back to Google Bookmarks after the Delicious "sunset" debacle, but there really isn't a quick and easy to import bookmarks to Google Bookmarks unless I install the Google Toolbar.

    It looks like Delicious will remain online, just not part of Yahoo!, but at least there's now a way to import bookmarks into Google Bookmarks.

    This one is also a nice importer:

  5. I'm afraid, that Google Bookmarks are going to be shut down. They are not updated for a while. Chrome uses Google Documents instead, extremely inconvenient, I would say, from both points of view, Chrome (no labels) and Documents (they clutter your view).

  6. Google should really put more effort into Google Bookmarks.

    If that product grows like delicious, it could be one more good parameter to improve search results, as people only bookmark what they like.

    And like Valey said, it is very inconvenient to have Chrome clutter Google Docs with is bookmarks.

  7. I followed the steps to get html file from firefox to delicious and into chrome but I cannot figure out how to get them into google bookmarks?? I do not get "imported" nor "delicious-export". Help!

  8. this doesn't work. I keep getting an error. Also, I can't install the Google toolbar with my new version of Firefox. So I can't find ANY way to import an HTML file into Google bookmarks.

  9. this sucks, common google, why create something then not let people use it properly. No import of html file, so simple to make and yet it isn't there. really poor.

  10. What I don't understand is that you can export igoogle bookmarks but you can't import them back NUTS

  11. How can I import my Google Cromer Bookmark to Google Bookmark?

  12. whether this method is still valid?

    1. import into delicious doesn't work as of today because "they are investigating instances of abuse of the service"

  13. Quoting Dr. Seuss: "We're here! We're here! We're here!"

    Any news on a way to import bookmarks to "Google Bookmarks"?

  14. still looking for a solution. i just want to sync my bookmarks across different browsers/devices by using the same google account.

  15. Same here....looking for solution to import

  16. OK, it's a bit fiddly, but there is a workaround with an Android app, GBookmarks (

    GBookmark syncs with the Google Bookmarks web service and has a function to import and export.

    I needed to add Analytics campaign tags to all of my bookmarks (I use it as a resource when in Social conversations to quickly find links to content on our site);

    1. On Android device, export bookmarks from GBookmarks to HTML file.
    2. Move HTML file to PC (via GDrive or whatever's easiest).
    3. Edit HTML file on desktop, adding tags etc. or adding more bookmarks from other sources
    4. Delete all bookmarks from Google Bookmarks.
    5. Move file back to GBookmarks/Export folder on Android device
    6. Import file in to GBookmarks.
    7. Sync

    All bookmarks now in Google Bookmarks and in the GBookmarks app, syncing on demand.

    It isn't pretty. It should be a lot easier that this. But it works.

    1. This may be a stupid question, but where is the exported file...I can't seem to find it on my phone.


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